Four days and counting until the Bob Diaco era officially begins. BYU is coming to Rentschler Field Friday and the hope is that these Huskies, who have gone just 13-21 the last three seasons, can show signs of a program that played in the Fiesta Bowl after the 2010 season.
“I want to see a team that is focused, resolute, I want to see aggressive, intense, tough team that gives great effort,” Diaco said during his Monday press conference about what he wants to see from his team Friday night (via SNY.com's John Silver). “I don’t want to see a rigid, stuffy, decelerating group. I want to see animation, I WANT to HEAR animation. I want to see an energy coming off individual players and as a unit. GREAT joy in what they are doing. Four quarters of celebration…I will be disappointed if I don’t see that.“
Two seasons ago, UConn had one of the best defenses in the Big East, but after Sio Moore, Tevardo Williams, Blidi Wreh-Wilson and Dwayne Gratz left for the NFL, the unit struggled in 2013. And now, against the Cougars' high-powered offense, the Huskies will have their work cut out for them.
“Everyone in the team has been waiting for this game since we started winter workouts,” linebacker Graham Stewart said. “It’s here. I think you should always want to go after the big dog. Have a big game. That’s why you play the game, for that raw emotion and the crowd. It’s very exciting.”